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LilZ's Profile

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Looking for "Made in LA" kind of food gifts to bring up to Seattle

One year I got a jar if the ultra hot mustard from Philippes. Amazing gift!

Sugar Cookie Dough?

We are very lazy bakers. Is there anywhere in the LA area that I could buy sugar cookie dough for Xmas cookies? If it came already rolled out, that would be a Christmas miracle. Thanks so much for any tips!

Dec 16, 2011
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Funemployment Happy Hour Tour

Some people call it hiatus. Some, getting laid off. I'm determined to make it funemployment. So, I'm looking for the best, fun happy hour deals to help me ride out this time more, um, happily. Would love to hear about your favorite Happy Hour deals and destinations.

So far, I love the HH at Kay and Dave's in Culver City. Like "gilded hour" at Tar Pit, bonus is that they have a late HH too.

What else should be on the schedule?


The Tar Pit
609 N La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Sep 12, 2011
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

soup dumplings on west side?

BAO on Beverly Blvd. and Sweetzer has surprisingly good XLB. Totally trendy looking place, and not the most authentic environs, but in a pinch -- it does the trick. Plus, they've got a really good happy hour!

Jun 17, 2011
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Maestro's - first visit tomorrow night - any first-timer tips for me?

You'll have a great time! I would HIGHLY suggest the Crab Cocktail appetizer (the best crab I've ever had in California!) and the creamed corn.

Jun 16, 2011
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

BEST of the Flo Brasseries?


We are trying to make reservations for Christmas dinner, and may just resort to going to one of the Flo Brasseries. Are any of these better than the others? Usually I avoid them because they are beautiful but average -- but I'm not picky on Christmas. :)

Any other Xmas suggestions welcome too. Thanks so much!

Dec 10, 2010
LilZ in France

Help! Husband bought Sweet Potatoes instead of Yams

Hi all,

I was planning on making a traditional "sweet potato" casserole (yams, technically, I guess) for a crowd tomorrow - but my husband picked up REAL sweet potatoes instead. Now I have a pile of those yellow, waxy things and I've never cooked with them before. Any tips? How can I substitute and still make a sweet side dish?


Nov 25, 2009
LilZ in Home Cooking

Wedding Reception on a VERY Tight Budget in LA


I just threw a wedding on the cheap, and hired out the Kogi truck. You can have your guests eat all they want for less than $15 each. But if you would need to rent or find a venue... But let me tell ya, it was a hit!

Some other options I looked into were:
Chichen Itza
La Casita Mexicana

And the key for a cheap wedding is - don't go gringo. ;) We live in LA - take advantage! If you can avoid hiring any silly "Westside" vendors, caterers, DJs, whatever. People get married everyday in our town outside of Santa Monica and Beverly Hills - for less than a fortune.

Congratulations and good luck!

Nov 19, 2009
LilZ in Los Angeles Area


Hi Hounds,

I'd really love some suggestions on where to enjoy Beaujolais this weekend! if there's anytime to drink it, it's within the next 72 hours, right? Any place in Hollywood / Weho / Westside would be great. Doesn't matter if it's a restaurant, wine bar, regular old bar -- but it would be great if they were throwing kind of a fest for this weekend, you know, with the new stuff... Has anyone seen anything like that around?

Thanks so much!

Nov 19, 2009
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Whole Lobster and Crab in Chinatown

Hi all,

We're looking for a place in Chinatown (yes, needs to be Chinatown, not Monterey Park) to get really great whole lobster and crab, done up salt n pepper style, spicy style, garlic style... we are open to anything as long as it's awesome! Should be a banquet type place that would be good for a group of about 8. Any other suggestions of great dishes to get (esp. seafood) would be much appreciated.


Jun 18, 2009
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Esterhazy Torte?


I just got back from a wonderful trip to Vienna, where I basically ate cake two to three times a day. This culinary research led me to one conclusion -- the "Esterhazy Torte" is the most friggin' delicious dessert on the planet!!! This Hungarian dessert consists of 6 or so thin layers of a crunchy walnut cakes, layered with buttercream, covered with apricot glaze and fondant. It's ridiculous.

So -- does anyone know where I can find such a thing in Los Angeles? I will DRIVE to get it. And if that isn't in the cards, I'm happy to spend a day or two in my kitchen trying to recreate it, so any recipes or links to recipes would be great too.

Thanks so much!

Apr 25, 2009
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Street Food Wedding!

Thanks, everyone, for such great suggestions! I'll keep you posted. :)

Apr 15, 2009
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Street Food Wedding!

Hey Chowhounds,

I'm planning a ghetto (fabulous) wedding - and I'm looking for ideas.

I've hired KOGI to come and make tacos for dinner - but what can I have out in a buffet that kind of keeps with a LA Street Food theme? I think that bacon wrapped hot dogs may be a bit TOO street...

Any ideas for munchies? Any ideas for drinks?

Thanks so much!

Apr 09, 2009
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Where can I buy Pepper Vinegar?

Hi Chowhounds!

We are making collard greens, and want to find pepper vinegar. No luck at Ralphs or the hot sauce store @ Farmer's Market. Any suggestions?


Jan 10, 2009
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Good Southern and Creole Cookbooks?


Can anyone recommend a few great cookbooks that specialize in Southern Home Cooking? What about Creole? My fiancee is craving Louisiana dishes like red beans and rice, etouffe and gumbo. Also, looking for a great "Midwesty - Southern" cookbook that covers classics like Biscuits and Gravy, chicken fried steak, fried chicken, etc.

We live in Los Angeles, so this is hard to come by for us!

Thanks so much!

Aug 31, 2008
LilZ in Home Cooking

What's the Best Eating Street in LA?


Jul 11, 2008
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Eating Solo -- tonight -- out of towner

I'm in Chicago from LA and would like to treat myself to a great dinner tonight -- somewhere I can eat alone and not feel obvious. I'm staying in the River North area, so anything downtown works. I prefer to eat at counters and bars, and there should be booze. I'm a very adventurous eater, so throw any suggestions at me. And thank you so much for your help!

Jun 18, 2008
LilZ in Chicago Area

The Waffle -- worst restaurant experience EVER

I know that this place just opened this week, so we went in for lunch knowing there would be a few glitches. What I didn't anticipate was, after an hour and a half, leaving without ever getting our food.

I have never walked out of a restaurant in my life. But my experience at this place was extraordinary! When we first placed our orders, we were the first people in the place and noticed that there was a large party getting ready to sit down. We asked if we could put our order in before them. The waitress said ok. And then she left for 15 minutes to take their order instead of ours. Super.

Finally we placed our order.

25 minutes later, it came out wrong.
5 minutes after that, it came out wrong again.
And again.
And again.

After waiting for an hour, and still with no success in ordering an EGG WHITE SCRAMBLE, we called over the manager. He assured us that he put in the correct order. (for the 5th time). And then he vanished.

After another half hour our waitress basically told us that our food was never coming and told us to probably leave because she really didn't know if our egg whites would ever show up from the kitchen. At this point, the restaurant was packed. They couldn't turn a table to save their lives, and we started joking with fellow diners about being stuck like a bunch of hostages.

Unless you are some sort of masochist, avoid The Waffle at all costs.

Feb 22, 2008
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Amarone was....meh.

Went to Amarone with my guy expecting a great Italian meal. We had read rave reviews! Anyhow, the place is very charming, and the free glass of Prosecco to start the meal. We ordered the swordfish carpaccio, which was yummy -- I would recommend. But the burrata plate we got was a disaster. The piece of burrata was frozen through. There were little ice crystals inside it! Therefore, it tasted like chalk. My date's pasta dish with rigatoni and sausage was way too salty. However, my plate of spaghetti pomodoro was good. Nothing to fawn over, but it was pretty darn tasty.
However, we had a truly bizarre wine situation. I spotted a bottle of my fave chiani riserva on the list, and ordered it up. By the time they had cut the foil off the bottle (but hadn't touched the cork) I noticed that they didn't bring up the riserva. It was a non-reserve wine from a later year. So I told the server, who excused himself. He pretended to consult something on the sidetable and returned to our table to tell us there were no bottles of riserva left. I looked over and saw that he had just consulted a stack of napkins. Anyhow, he assured us this other bottle was great. I asked him if it was the same price, remembering I saw this bottle at a cheaper price. He said it was the same price as the riserva. I asked him to double check. He looked at a wine list at another table and returned and told us again it was the same. At this point, I just want a drink, so I told him to open it up. At the end of the meal, on our bill, they had charged us for the bottle of riserva. I asked to see a wine list. Sure enough, the bottle our server had given us was cheaper, yet I was still charged the price for the other bottle. SO, we had them re-do the bill, but I left there feeling like they were being dishonest and trying to rip me off.
I really don't see what the hype is all about here.
Save your money and go to Capo instead!

Dec 20, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Best fried shrimp?

I love the big fried shrimp at the Galley in Santa Monica. They are perfect with a strong cocktail. Great atmosphere too!

Oct 16, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Pre-Police Chow and Booze near Dodger Stadium

Hi all and thanks for your help! I am planning on seeing the mighty POLICE in concert this Saturday and wanted to grab a bite and many alcoholic beverages beforehand -- closer to the stadium the better.

Here's what I'm looking for:
Open and serving at 3pm and on
Chowhound worthy grub
High octane drinks
Within reasonable distance to stadium (see aforementioned drinks)

I know there are a couple Mexican places along Sunset. Anything along there would be great.

Thanks guys!!!

Jun 22, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Date tonight---Off-Vine?

In same neighborhood, I would suggest both Magnolia and Bowrey -- on Sunset just east of Vine. The food is good (not superlative) but I love the atmosphere, and both are great date places. And appeal to guys. :) Have fun!

Mar 19, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Azami was horrible!

I live right down the street from Azami on Melrose, and it used to be a pretty dependable place for decent, affordable sushi. But I was appalled when I visited the place this weekend. Tuna, kampachi and yellowtail were all super fishy and funky and made my stomach churn. Blue crab handrolls tasted like an ikcy tunafish salad. And the squid sushi featured squid that was STILL FROZEN. The whole thing was a mess. And then the bill came. I was the only one eating -- and the check with sake and beer -- was over $70 before tip. For one person. And my poor boyfriend had to pay -- I felt so bad! Anyhow, that's the heads up. This place is OVER. Anyone else have an experience like this?

Mar 19, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Truffle Salt on the Westside?

I know they have it at Bay Cities Deli on Lincoln! Good luck!

Mar 16, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Mr.Chow yes? or Mr. Chow no?

I'm sure you will get alot of negative responses here about Mr. Chow. I definitely think it's worth going, but you need to prepare yourself, so you go in with the right expectations. First off, it's going to cost a fortune. And there is no way around that since there really isn't a priced menu, and the bill comes written in Mandarin. (Or Cantonese? Who knows?) And you will probably just have dishes brought to you. You CAN request stuff though. The other thing you should know is that this really isn't Chinese food by any stretch of the imagination. Its a bizarre cuisine all it's own. I love the chicken satay that is bright orange, and comes with peanut butter. It's quite strange and tasty. LOVE the drunken fish too. And dragon noodles. And bright green shrimp. I avoid crispy beef and that deep fried spinach they push on everyone. I suggest tons of lychee martinis too. All the food is pretty sweet, served in small portions family style and a bit odd. Think of it as an '80's fusion flashback and have some fun. Get dressed up. Look for celebrities. And don't be suprised with the bill. This really is a place you can go once, and say you've done it!

Feb 23, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

The DIVE on Highland?

Anyone been yet? From what I understand, it's a new dark dive bar with a big menu done up by the folks who opened Hugo's. May check it out tonight. Apparently the bartender used to be at Hungry Cat as well. Sounds like a pretty good pedigree for a cheap joint. Any recommendations? Thanks!

Feb 22, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Moon Japanese at Highland and Santa Monica?

Just saw that a new Japanese restaurant, Moon, opened up in the minimall at Highland and Santa Monica. Anyone been yet? It's billing itself as "Authentic Japanese." Would love it if an izakaya opened up in my hood!

Feb 02, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Farmer's Market LA (Fairfax & 3rd) - What to eat?

Get the chicken enchiladas w tomatillo sauce at Loteria. Yum! Or their shredded beef tacos, chix mole tacos... well, its all good there. Then go and get some english toffee at that toffee place. To die for!

Jan 26, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Unique, houndish Valentine's Ideas?

I ate at the Inn of the Seventh Ray for Vday once and caught bronchitis is was so cold! And the menu was set and not very good. Save this spot for a sunny afternoon.

Jan 26, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area

Who Makes the Best Mojitos?

Xiomara is the defintely the best. They take huge stalks of sugarcane and feed them into this massive machine that creates real sugarcane juice. Very cool to watch. Plus, they serve them up in these tilty glasses -- it really makes you feel like you're DRINKING.

Jan 19, 2007
LilZ in Los Angeles Area